It can be hard managing to concentrate in Summer, especially if you're exhausted and your mind dreams of relaxing on a sunny beach. Taking a break and finding a wonderful inspiration can help you filling your eyes with beauty and your mind with the strength you need to get on with your day even when you're away from balmy beaches or can't afford a holiday. If you have a passion for the sea and for fashion as well, get inspired by the painting "Sadko" by Russian realist painter Ilya Repin.
Sadko is a Russian folktale hero: the legend says he was a very talented musician and that the Underwater King offered him a reward for playing in his kingdom.
Time passed and Sadko started to get tired, but a sage came to his rescue suggesting him to tear through the strings of his instrument to interrupt the dance without angering the King.
The Underwater King would then stop dancing and offer him as a reward one of his daughters.
Sadko would have to refuse 600 daughters of the king, but accept the very last one of them.
Repin here portrayed the final moment of Sadko's decision with the half-human/half-aquatic girls passing in front of the hero.
Each of them wears fantastic attires, pearls and jewels, and each of them receives a refusal.
The betrothed, Tschernawuschka, is wrapped in a golden light (gold, rather than blue prevails in this scene) and flashes a glance at Sadko.
The painting is a beautiful fantasy, extraordinary dream and the story also fascinated other artists.
Alexei Tolstoy wrote a poem about Sadko, while Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov composed an opera in 1897 about it and co-wrote the libretto for it.
Operas such as "Sadko" proved inspiring also for ballet. Quite often in these performances painters were indeed called to create the scenes or the costumes.
Painter Mikhail Vrubel created for example the costume for the the Sea Queen in "Sadko", donned by his wife, the beautiful opera singer Nadezhda Zabela-Vrubel.
"Sadko" became a ballet with sets by Boris Anisfeld, costumes by Anisfeld and Léon Bakst and choreography by Michel Fokine.
Premiered in 1911 in Paris, the ballet was staged again in 1916 with choreography by Adolph Bolm and costumes designed by Natalia Gontcharova.
Repin's "Sadko" will be on display at the Drents Museum in Assen as part of the exhibition "Peredvizhniki - Russian Realism Around Repin 1870 - 1900" (from 25th September 2016 to 2nd April 2017), that will feature more than 70 paintings by various artists, most of them on loan from the State Russian Museum in St. Petersburg.
Member of the Boxxet Network of Blogs, Videos and Photos